Butterfly Ballet Club

Dance Performance & Recital Tips for Parents

Dance Performance & Recital Tips for Parents

Get Ready for Dance Recital Season!

As a dance teacher and studio owner, I encourage our parents and students to plan ahead for their performances in order to reduce stress and last-minute emergencies. 

Performances are the highlight of your dancer's year. A little bit of planning can make this special event a positive experience for both you and your child.

How to Prepare for Your Child's Dance Performance or Recital

1. Keep dance costumes in a safe place

Make sure that your costumes are stored in a safe place that is inaccessible to younger siblings & pets. Fact: Dogs really do eat tutus and your dance teacher doesn't usually have an extra costume on hand. If a replacement costume is available in time, it will be very expensive to replace. Keeping your costume safe is the #1 thing you need to do to prepare for the performance.

I always tell my students that they are allowed to try on their costume one time to show their parents, then the costume must be hung in the closet until performance day.

2. Reduce stress by packing ahead & using a packing list.

Whether this is your child's first dance recital or your dancer has been performing for years, a packing list helps you prepare for the performance and reduce stress.

Year after year at my ballet school, at least one parent has run home to retrieve  forgotten ballet slippers. Mistakes do happen, but checking ahead reduces the odds that you will face the unexpected.

I remember the time that my daughter and I were driving to her Nutcracker rehearsal and she discovered that she had only one ballet slipper in her bag. We had to make a detour to the dance store to pick up a pair of shoes. 

Taking a couple of minutes to print out or create a packing list will pay you back 100% in the time you will save. It might even save you a trip to the dance store!

I have created a performance packing list for you that's printable and ready for performance day!

Get your FREE Printable Performance Packing Lists for Kids, Tweens & Teens


3. Involve your dancer in packing the process.

Your dancer may be aware of some performance details that were communicated by the teacher during dance class. Perhaps the dancers need bobby pins to attach their headpiece or the teacher wants them to bring an extra pair of tights. Make sure to ask their child if their teacher asked them to bring anything to the performance.

Dancers learn an important life skill when you work together with them to pack up for the performance:

For younger dancers - We recommend that once their bag is packed, parents put the bag in a safe place with the costume so your child won't play with it.

Tweens/Teens - Tween and Teens should pack their own performance bag. This helps them learn to be responsible. Using a list like the Tween/Teen Packing List will keep them on track. Parents can double check the list with them.

4. Order gifts for your dancer or dance teachers ahead of time.

Recital time is so busy, so plan ahead with gifts for your dancer and teachers. A small gift for your teachers will mean the world to them. They work so hard preparing for the show and a little bit of appreciation goes a long way to brighten their day.


Gwen Potter has been teaching ballet for 30+ years. She has seen the benefits of parents planning ahead for performances. She is also the creator of the first educational subscription box for kids, tweens & teens:  Butterfly Ballet Club for Ages 3 to 8 and Ballet Inspiration Club for Age 9 to 14. 

Butterfly Ballet Club offers delightful recital gifts for your dancer and her teachers! Gifts for dance teachers

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